Skip to main content

Food and Drink energy savings

From identifying new energy saving opportunities, to providing financial support and technical expertise, we’re here to help you slash your energy costs and grow a greener business.

Energy is a significant cost for any business, especially in the face of continually rising energy prices. For the food and drink sector energy costs can be significant given production processes, shift patterns, building footprints and cold storage requirements. Time spent managing energy costs rewards with an improved bottom line. 

Site visits by our team of advisors always identify annual savings – without fail. The actions we commonly recommend to the sector and support them to implement include:

  • building fabric namely windows and structural insulation to improve heat retention;
  • upgrading or replacement of costly and inefficient heating units with new boilers or renewable technologies such as air source heat pumps;
  • upgrading to modern, energy efficient refrigeration systems;
  • investment in renewables for energy generation e.g. solar photovoltaic (PV) panels;
  • heating controls to better manage space heating.

Food and drink case studies

We’re here to help your food and drink business cut energy, reduce carbon and save costs. Our free, ongoing support and the interest-free SME Loan can make project delivery a breeze.

  • Eyemouth Freezers put a freeze on rising energy costs and are set to save £30,000 each year. Their first project was to install LED lighting in cold stores and processing areas. Next, the oil-fired boiler was upgraded to a modern, energy-efficient boiler. And to conclude, they made use dehumidifiers in the cold store, which saved energy but importantly improve operating conditions and safety.
  • Scottish food manufacturer Paterson Arran found new ways to save energy, cut costs and meet its long term sustainability goals. With our support, the business identified £38,000 worth of savings with a rapid payback of less than a year.
  • When Donald Cream Ices were looking to upgrade its freezer room we provided the frozen food wholesaler with guidance about selecting suppliers and equipment as well as support with the SME Loan application. The resulting equipment upgrade saves the business £4,500 each year on energy bills.
  • Food Options Ltd are suppliers of chilled and frozen food. When we explored energy saving solutions we suggested an upgrade to LED lighting. However, some impressive savings were also to be found when investigating the viability of voltage optimisation and power factor correction. Adaptation of energy technology could lock in savings of around £12,000 per annum.

Food Waste Reduction Action Plan

Scotland plans to meet its ambitious target to reduce its food waste by one third by 2025.

Food waste is a global problem. An estimated 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted every year. This is around one-third of all that is produced for human consumption, and it is generating about 8% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve an ambitious objective like the 2025 food waste reduction target, we need long-term planning and equally ambitious policy efforts.

A 33% reduction in food waste in Scotland has numerous benefits:

  • Food waste in Scotland will be reduced by 297,000 tonnes;
  • The Scottish economy will see a net benefit of nearly £2.7 billion;
  • Scotland’s total carbon impact will reduce by 1.5%.
  • We will produce lower methane emissions as less food waste goes into landfill;
  • Scotland could realise 27 million tonnes of available bio-resources in Scotland;
  • A prospering and dynamic Scottish bioeconomy;
  • A greater national understanding of the value of food and of its environmental impact.
  • A Scottish food culture that respects how food can impact our health, our wellbeing and our communities’ cohesion.

Read the Food Waste Reduction Action Plan and see what role your business has to play in combating climate change.

Regulatory information

  • Scotland will be the first country in the UK to introduce a deposit return scheme for drinks containers. Consumers will pay a 20p deposit on single-use drinks containers, which they’ll get back when they return the empty bottle or can to be recycled. The scheme will give drinks producers a vital role in Scotland’s response to the climate emergency. We’ve created a guide to the scheme for drinks producers, which sets out how the scheme works, your obligations, and how you can appoint fulfil them.
  • The Waste (Scotland) Regulations have been in effect for a few years and will affect your business, no matter its size. Further information about the requirements and presentation of food waste is available online. In January 2025, Scotland will ban the landfilling of biodegradable municipal waste. This Food Waste Reduction Action Plan will help implement the ban by reducing the food waste in municipal waste, supporting the continued reduction in emissions and helping to meet Scotland’s climate targets.

Energy efficiency and renewable assessments

We’re experiencing high demand for energy assessments at the moment, and new requests will be fulfilled by Business Energy Scotland in April 2022. 

Business Energy Scotland’s team of advisors and technical specialists will help you implement meaningful change and achieve serious savings – an average of 24% on energy bills. They can provide:

  • A free energy opportunities assessment, at your convenience, to identify where and how savings can be made;
  • A comprehensive report – written for you, highlighting key actions you can take now, at no cost, and signposting major changes, and how to access support, further advice and financing.

No matter if you are just starting out on your journey to lower your carbon emissions and associated energy costs, or are making great progress, help is on hand. Simply fill in the form below and Business Energy Scotland will contact you after 1 April 2022. Meanwhile, you can take a look at our wide range of tools, guides and resources available online to help you get started.